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CrossRoads Music & Instruments: Press

'Homegrown trio opens up music shop in Cupertino'
By Matt Wilson
mwilson@community-newspapers.commercurynews.com
July 20, 2012


Owners of the new CrossRoads Music and Instruments shop in Cupertino know the city and its schools quite well. To them, the community is just as familiar as the piano keys are to the pianist.

Darren Anderson, Kristina Sablan and Scott Kolodzieski all attended Cupertino schools, including Cupertino High School at one point, and played plenty of music through their years in the West Valley.

"It's very rewarding for all three of us to be able to open a store in your hometown and provide a service that is very much needed," Anderson said.

The store at 10564 S. De Anza Blvd., near Aqui Cal-Mex restaurant, opened in late June and specializes in musical sales, rentals and repairs.

The trio chose to open the store due to what they say is a lack of shops near Cupertino schools selling and renting instruments, particularly to students.

"There is a huge void in the area," Anderson said. "We are surrounded by public and private schools with a lot of children involved in music. And while the schools and lessons are plentiful, a place to get instruments and proper sheet music is not."

CrossRoads is hard at work creating a symbiotic relationship with local schools in time for the upcoming school year. The store plans to carry specific teaching materials and sheet music that student musicians and teachers will need for school.

"We're networking a lot with teachers in the area," Kolodzieski said. "We can also
recommend a teacher for just about anything within a couple of miles, or even just a couple of minutes away and down the street."

In addition to attending the schools in the area, the owners are well connected with the music scene in the area. They have a long history of working with musicians, repairmen and others in the trade.

The owners plan to be in CrossRoads most of the time, providing one-on-one service to customers and aiming for a friendly vibe for a sometimes expensive and intimidating hobby.

"We're a mom-and-pop store, just with much younger moms and pops," Kolodzieski said. "There is a comfort factor. Families want to go to a place where their kids can be comfortable and not be intimidated by the loud music. It's a nice family feel you want to show that invites the community in."

As CrossRoads gets further entrenched in the community, the shop's owners hope to participate in such school functions as walk-a-thons and maybe sponsor a local sports team.

For more information about CrossRoads Music and Instruments, visit www.crossroadsinstruments.com.
'Crossroads Music is a Mom and Pop Store in the Truest Sense'
Recently opened Crossroads Music and Instruments (no, not located in Cupertino’s Crossroads) is owned and run by Cupertino natives.

By Martin Towar
August 1, 2012


Three Cupertino High grads return home to the sound of music—in their own store.
Obscured by glass display cases, a wall of guitars and stands of sheet music, it’s hard to tell the doors of Crossroads Music and Instruments, located at 10564 S. De Anza Blvd. opened June 23.

Started by Darren Anderson together with his wife Kristina Sablan, and decade-old friend (they played Little League together) Scott Kolodziski, Crossroads already supplies sheet music and instrument repairs to local music schools, teachers and public institutions such as San Jose State University and Miller Middle School.

“We’ve had a lot of blessings, getting things going,” said Anderson. “The location, the glass cases, we are very grateful for the support we’ve gotten.”

The rapid growth of Crossroads comes from an outpouring of support from friends, former coworkers and current business associates spanning years, and by filling a niche in the community left vacant after Kolodziski’s old store of 18 years imploded.

“We’re not trying to stomp anyone out,” Kolodziski said. “There was a hole that was left and now we’re here.”

Crossroads doesn’t just sell guitars and amps; they offer instrument repairs as well as simple but rare necessities like sheet music.

“Sheet music is hard to find, that’s the real tough thing,” said Kolodziski.

Kolodziski added that customers like familiar faces to answer questions, rather than the constant cycling of employees the more corporate stores are known for.

“You go buy your guitar from somebody and three weeks later they are not there anymore,” Kolodziski said. “We are looking for a long term relationship with the customers,” added Anderson.

“Private teachers and schools like to see it in person and have a place to get their repairs done locally,” said Kolodziski.

These aren’t high school students working for the summer. Anderson and Sablan are both musicians and run Firesign Entertainment, a booking service for professional musicians, while Kolodziski is the lead singer in Soul Intention.

Compared to the more corporate music and instrument stores, the trio takes pride in selling a wide selection of instruments from the wildly used but hard to find brass and wind instruments to obscure didgeridoos.

“With the range of instruments and selection we have I don’t know of anyone that has everything we have,” Kolodziski said.

“We are lucky to be in an area were music is still respected and offered in schools” said Anderson. “You can find someone playing the harmonica and someone playing the sitar in the same area which is pretty rare. When I was working here 10 to 15 years ago it was far different,” Kolodziski added.

Crossroads Music sells a full selection of instruments, from beginner’s acoustic guitar to the professional’s standing base.

In addition to providing instruments for both new and experienced, Crossroads also provides music classes, but don’t think they are the new kids on the block trying to make a name for themselves at their neighbor’s expense. The lessons one-on-one and are taught by local teachers who traditionally made house calls.

“There is not a lot of one-on-one teaching in schools,” Anderson said, adding that they will fill supply lists by teachers, stocking exactly what they need, no matter the instrument.

“People like their kids to have violin lessons or flute lessons and they need a place to do that and to get the books and instruments,” Sablan added.

It’s that dedication to their local music teachers, such as John McCrea who taught Anderson music 25 years ago, and the community that raised them that drives the founders of Crossroads.

“We are operated by the owners and we hope to provide jobs in the near future,” Anderson said.

Anderson, Kolodziski and Sablan were all raised in Cupertino and attended Cupertino High School.

“It’s really nice to give back to the community this way.”

By providing the necessities of music schools and students, instrument repairs and loans, lessons and a wide selection of instruments, like the ukulele, the trio said they hope they can return to the community the generosity it has shown them.

Crossroads Music & Instruments is located at 10564 South De Anza Boulevard and open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and can be reached at 408-996-8742 or by visiting the site, www.crossroadsinstruments.com.